Maintaining a healthy weight by going to the gym has become routine to a lot of Americans. One study shows that in 2019, the number of people who went to health clubs in the US increased by 28%, and it is projected that there will be 230 million gym goers worldwide by 2030. This reflects the fact that more and more people are investing in their health, especially in light of the ongoing health crisis.
However, being healthy takes more than just having an exercise routine, and health-conscious people know this. Most gym goers also follow a healthy diet and stay away from dangerous chemicals that can affect their health. Moreover, they prefer to workout in clean gyms, as a study by the International Health, Racquet & Sports Club Association (IHRSA) shows that customer satisfaction ratings for unclean gyms typically drop from 83% to 43%. Here are some things that you can do to make sure that your gym is clean so that your clients will keep coming back.
Follow a Strict Cleaning Schedule
With the number of people coming into a gym and using the same equipment that other gym-goers have used earlier, it is no wonder that a gym is a hot spot for germs and bacteria. One study examined how dirty exercise equipment can be and found that an exercise bike has 39 times more bacteria than a plastic reusable cafeteria tray while free weights contain 362 more bacteria than a toilet seat. The most common bacteria found on these gym equipment typically cause infections and other illnesses.
Implementing a strict cleaning protocol for your gym not only improves your customer satisfaction rate, but it also keeps your clients safe from the potential diseases that these bacteria might cause. It would be good to hire professional cleaners on a regular basis to deep clean your gym. By doing so, you ensure that areas in your gym that are not typically accessible to you and your staff members are cleaned as well. Also, make sure that your staff follows a specific cleaning schedule that outlines what is expected from them. This schedule will also help you cover all the areas in your gym.
Make Hygiene Compliance Easy
Your clients themselves are part of your primary stakeholders when it comes to keeping your gym clean. While sanitation protocols might be in place, you can never be sure if your clients follow them all the time. In fact, unsafe practices are quite common among gym goers. One study of 1,000 gym goers found that 51.4% participants used gym equipment, but did not wipe them down after their workout. Meanwhile, 60.4% of respondents touched their face, mouth, or eyes after using gym equipment and before washing their hands. As well, 1 in 3 gym goers admitted to going to the gym while sick. These unsafe habits can compromise the health of your other clients, even those that follow your sanitary protocols.
One may to make sure that your gym goers follow your sanitation protocols is to make compliance easier. For example, you can install hand sanitizers in areas where gym goers are likely to pass by. You can also put dispensers of wet wipes as well as trash bins to encourage gym goers to wipe down the equipment they use and to dispose of used wipes properly. Finally, be sure to remind gym goers to follow your protocol by strategically posting signs around your gym.
Educate Gym-Goers and Staff Members
Making your clients accountable for keeping the gym clean for their gym goers is possible by making compliance easy, but at some point, you may also have to reinforce this by verbal reminders from your staff. Given that the IHRSA has developed a framework for health clubs to follow, requiring gyms to be more stringent in their efforts to maintain a clean and safe environment for gym goers, you need all the support you can get. This is where your staff comes in.
Make sure, then, that your staff members are aware of the heightened cleanliness protocols that you are supposed to follow. Integrate health-related buzzwords, such as “clean,” “germ-free,” “sanitary,” and “hygienic” into the vocabulary that they use when interacting with gym-goers so that you also regularly communicate your gym’s values through them. In turn, your gym members will also understand their roles in keeping the gym clean. Finally, make sure that your staff members lead by example by making them be the first ones to follow your own cleanliness protocols.
Health is an important aspect of our lives, and following an exercise routine is something that most Americans do to stay healthy. However, exercising in itself will not work if the environment for exercise is unsanitary. It is the role of gym owners to ensure that they follow a strict code when it comes to cleanliness, as doing so eventually results in satisfied gym goers.